Gov. Matt Bevin plans to cut funding for higher education by 4.5 percent this fiscal year and 9 percent over the next two years. That is a shame, particularly as it applies to Northern Kentucky University.
NKU is seriously underfunded compared to the University of Kentucky and the University of Louisville. Former NKU President James Votruba and current President Geoffrey Mearns have worked tirelessly to erase that funding gap. To his credit, Bevin recently said he will work to erase the inequity. I hope so.
If we want high-quality universities, we will have to pay for them. It is wrong to load up our students with horrendous debt. State schools should be adequately funded by the state, and yes, that could mean raising state taxes.
We need to ask ourselves what we are willing to pay for. The “no new taxes” syndrome has so permeated people’s psyches that politicians are afraid to even hint at tax increases.
Tell Bevin to restore the cuts to universities and eliminate the inequity between NKU and the others. Tell the legislature to have the courage to raise taxes. We should pay for what we get.